The day Roger Federer couldn’t stop laughing at CNN correspondent’s Spanish phrases, he did his most memorable play of last year.
The 30-year-old won the Paris Masters for the first time this year before falling to Andy Murray in the quarterfinals.
The world No. 3 went crazy when Maria Jose Paez, who was reporting the match on Spanish channel TUDN, asked him a question in English.
“How does it feel to be Roger Federer?”
It was his first answer in English, which he then repeated in Spanish a minute later.
“It’s very, very funny!” he said.
And that’s what happens to tennis.
All of your favourite players, including Novak Djokovic, are now fluent in English and other languages, but it’s the quirky ones that stick out most.
Here are nine you don’t want to miss this fall:
The Spaniard, who retired from his career in 2016, used to be the only non-English speaker at the French Open.
But it’s only when he’s out with his team for a match that he’s heard in French.
French-born Nadal was asked about his career at an official news conference in Paris when he was asked to switch to his native language.
“Why do you say it and not in French?” he asked.
“I don’t want to say it in front of my teammates,” he added.
“I don’t need to, I’m used to. I’m used to hearing it.”
The Swiss was the first to admit he wasn’t much of a linguist.
“I don’t speak enough languages in general to really do it,” he said.
“But it was a nice way to learn Spanish without much effort.
“The other day, I was in Madrid, and I saw a little girl on the street crying, and I asked her what was wrong. She couldn’t say anything. She was in total shock.”
There’s no doubting Nadal’s talent.
The seven-time French Open, four-time Australian Open, and seven-time Wimbledon champion is one of the most successful athletes of all time. But his favourite language could arguably be any language but his native Spanish.
“I like Spanish. I learned